web analytics
February 1, 2015 / 12 Shevat, 5775
 
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Op-Eds »

Will ‘Terrorism’ be Redefined to Placate Israeli Leftists?

Most people on the political right in Israel, including most pro-settler organizations and parties, regard the Price Tag radicals as an embarrassment.

Mosque defaced by Hebrew graffiti.

Mosque defaced by Hebrew graffiti.

American news headlines over the past few weeks have focused on political targeting by the Internal Revenue Service of conservative groups. But Israel is experiencing its own form of political targeting by the state. The attorney general is leading an initiative to have a small group of radical juveniles who engage in mischief declared a terrorist organization.

The group of politically-motivated Jewish vandals operates under the name Tag Mechir, or Price Tag. They came together as a response to Arab rock-throwing and general acts of vandalism against Jews perpetrated in the West Bank and in some other areas. Much of their activity consists of writing graffiti on cars and homes of Arabs or Jewish leftists. Their worst acts of misbehavior have involved vandalizing mosques. The local police have been unsuccessful in tracking down and arresting those involved, but they are thought to be young people from settlements in the West Bank.

Most people on the political right in Israel, including most pro-settler organizations and parties, regard the Price Tag radicals as an embarrassment. The vandals have been condemned by nearly every rabbi in the country. The Price Taggers have damaged property and they needlessly provoke Muslims and others in the most explosive region of the world. But they have killed no one. They do not engage in actual violence against humans, except for some revenge-rock-throwing.

(As it turns out, in several cases leftists and Arabs have vandalized Arab property as provocations to be blamed on settlers and the Price Tag group. Presumably, the Price Taggers are happy to accept the “credit” for these crimes even when they are not involved.)

The same leftists who seek to define the Price Taggers as terrorists bend over backward to excuse rock throwing by Arabs against Jews. Members of Israel’s chattering classes are always willing to defend freedom of speech for those holding opinions of which they approve.

Rather than engage the Price Tag juveniles in debate or simply denounce their behavior in the media, the government apparently prefers to deal with them by redefining terrorism to include petty vandalism.

It should be noted here that not one of the many cases of synagogues being vandalized by Arabs has been defined by the government as terrorism.

The initiative to proclaim the Price Tag group a terrorist organization has come from Israel’s politicized attorney general, Yehuda Weinstein. It was immediately endorsed by the leftist herds in media and academia, as well as by political hacks such as the minister of internal security and the justice minister.

Weinstein has a long track record of “differential prosecution.” This is manifested in his refusal to prosecute leftists and Arabs while running a special surveillance agency to spy on right-wing Jews. When an Arab Knesset member who participated in the “Hamas flotilla” seeking to end Israel’s naval control of the waters around the Gaza Strip violently attacked Israeli soldiers, Weinstein refused to prosecute her.

Weinstein has also studiously defended freedom of speech for radical leftists and Arabs while just as studiously seeking its suppression for everyone else. He has repeatedly indicted rabbis and others for “incitement” and “racism” when they dare to express political opinions with which the left disagrees – even prosecuting people for catcalls at a soccer game – but has never indicted any leftists calling for violence or mutiny by soldiers.

So what are we to make of this initiative to declare a group of juvenile vandals and punks a “terrorist organization”?

The most obvious problem with it is that it empties the very notion of terrorism of any substantive meaning. If some teenagers engaging in fraternity-like pranks and malicious graffiti are in the same category as the genocidal suicide bombers of Hamas and al Qaeda, then how bad can the Islamofascist terrorists really be?

But what is at least as outrageous is that the initiative is really nothing more than an assault against freedom of speech inside Israel. It is an arbitrary attempt to criminalize the political behavior of a fringe group while ignoring the violence constantly being perpetrated by groups from the other end of the political spectrum.

For example, the “Anarchists Against the Wall” organization that operates in Israel engages in actual violence against actual Israeli soldiers and police officers every single week. For years the group’s members have been joined by fellow anarcho-fascists from overseas in provoking violent confrontations with Israeli security personnel, supposedly all as part of their “protests” against Israel constructing its security fence against Palestinian terrorists.

None of the people promoting and cheering on the initiative to proclaim Price Tag a terrorist organization has endorsed the idea of defining Anarchists Against the Wall as a terrorist group. Why not?

The answer of course is that the “anarchists” are promoting the agenda of the far left. On the other hand, the Price Tag people may be misguided delinquents in need of a timeout in their rooms but they are strongly pro-Israel.

Similarly, Jewish radical leftist organizations have never been proclaimed terrorist organizations, even though many of the smaller ones endorse lawbreaking, treason, mutiny by soldiers, and world boycotts against Israel.

Why are they not being criminalized, prosecuted, and defined as terrorist groups?

About the Author: Steven Plaut is a professor at the University of Haifa. He can be contacted at steveneplaut@yahoo.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

2 Responses to “Will ‘Terrorism’ be Redefined to Placate Israeli Leftists?”

  1. Anonymous says:

    In Mosque Muslims are allowed to preach for hatred and violence and Muslim people who keep silence help them to do their violence.

    Muslim religious is what produce the Jihad and violence.

    We need Muslim backslash to REJECT THE JIHAD IN PUBLIC.

    Muslim need to show they are taking side. RABBI DR. BERNHARD ROSENBERG

  2. IT'S KIND OF LIKE A "NO VOTE" IS A VOTE.

Comments are closed.

SocialTwist Tell-a-Friend

Current Top Story
Arab attackers smashed these windows on an Egged bus in Jerusalem's Old City.
Egged Bus Attacked Traveling to Western Wall in Jerusalem
Latest Indepth Stories
Eli Weiss

Shepherding in the Shomron isn’t your usual kind of shepherding – despite his business-minded beginnings, Eli has discovered that a strong ideological impetus powers the job.

Resnick-013015-Pilot

I said to myself, “This story has got to be told. We’re losing this generation of World War II and if we don’t listen to them now, we’ve lost it.”

Eller-013015

His entire existence was about spreading simcha and glorifying G-d’s name on a daily basis.

IRAN-US-POLITICS-MILITARY

An Israeli strike could theoretically damage Iran’s nuclear program; only US can terminate program

At some point we need to stop simply defending and promoting Israel and start living in Israel

“We Jews are the only people who when we drop a book on the floor pick it up and kiss it.”

Though Zaide was the publisher of The Jewish Press, a big newspaper,I always remember him learning

Speaker Silver has been an extraordinary public servant since his election to the Assembly in 1975 and has been an exemplary leader of that body since 1994.

He spent the first leg of his daylong visit to the French capital at Hyper Cacher.

Drawing Congress into the Iran nuclear debate is the last thing the White House wants.

Great leaders like Miriam and like Sarah Schenirer possess the capacity to challenge the status quo that confronts them.

Obama’s foreign policy is viewed by both liberals and conservatives as deeply flawed

Many journalists are covertly blaming the Charlie Hebdo writers themselves through self-censorship.

Why does the Times relay different motivations and narratives for jihadists in Europe and Israel?

More Articles from Steven Plaut
"Today, I am a DOLPHIN!"

Why does Israeli health services refuse to finance species reassignment surgery as well?

The flag of France, flown during a White House ceremony. (archive photo)

Proposals for France to achieve a full, lasting, and just peace with their historic opponents

The iconic image is baby Shani in the arms of a policewoman frantically searching for Shani’s mother

“Oppressed people unfortunately often are forced into use of violence.”

“Mr. Prime Minister, declare a unilateral ceasefire! Remember, Blessed is the peacemaker!”

Israelis now know Arab terrorism isn’t caused by Israeli occupation but by ending Israeli occupation

The Mid-East conflict is a unidirectional campaign of Arabs murdering Jews, not the inverse.

Judah concedes he was wrong&feels regret; THAT is precisely what qualifies his house for leadership

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/opinions/will-terrorism-be-redefined-to-placate-israeli-leftists/2013/05/29/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: